The Airbus 380 is an impressive feat of aviation engineering. And the big reveal will take place today. The world’s first full-length twin-deck aircraft will be revealed at the Jean-Luc Lagardere Final Assembly Line hall at Toulouse, France. From the Airbus press release:
The 555-seat A380 passenger aircraft has a range of up to 8,000nm/15,000km, allowing it to fly non-stop between Europe and Asia, while the three-deck long-range freighter version, the A380F, will be able to carry up to 152 tonnes/ 335,000 lbs of cargo on standard pallets over distances of up to 5,600nm/10,400km. Incorporating the most advanced technologies available in this decade, it will be the most fuel efficient and environmentally friendly airliner ever built, while offering unequalled levels of passenger comfort and cargo carrying capability. First passenger operations are scheduled to begin in 2006 when the A380 is due to enter service. In addition, the first A380F, the freighter version of the aircraft, is expected to begin operations in 2008.
The FBI has retired Carnivore, a controversial Internet surveillance tool. This is a different from Echelon. Echelon is a monitoring platform operated by the NSA. Echelon apparently captures significant volumes of data worldwide. This report is very interesting and it brings to mind George Orwell’s 1984.
Good thing we have governments so focused on privacy otherwise this type of technology might be needed if things start to get out of hand. These folks, however, seem to be less impressed with the privacy efforts.
I spent yesterday working on charts for an artist. I use Finale and, although the software is quite powerful, I get angry every time I use it. Terrible, terrible workflow.
I was talking to a friend about the play for the digital entertainment hub at home. Microsoft and Apple have set their sights on becoming major players in the digital entertainment space. Microsoft through initiatives such as the XBOX, Media Player and Multimedia PC. Apple through initiatives such as iPod, iTunes and Airtunes. I found this post thought provoking on the significance of the Mac Mini.
There is no turning back on the digital home. Although leading edge right now it is only a matter of time before we approach music, video, TV as a software-driven environment. The content is already digitized.
The BMW 5 Series comes equipped with the iDrive system. iDrive is a computer-based control environment for most of the car’s secondary systems such as climate control, entertainment and navigation functions.
The iDrive is powered by Microsoft Windows CE.
“When we heard about BMW’s telematics vision, we knew the exceptional quality in Microsoft technology would fit hand-in-hand,” said Bob McKenzie, general manager of Microsoft’s Automotive Business Unit. “The iDrive concept is a unique one, and we’re proud to power the graphical user interface in the Control Display.”
At least there is an iPod adapter coming out soon for the 5 Series. I can have both Microsoft and Apple rebooting my car at random intervals.
For the past three years we have purchased the DVD set for the series 24. And I have no social life until we get through them all in a marathon like fashion. Every night, no matter how tired, I have to watch at least one episode. There is also a cool website that just opened devoted to 24 series 4. Check it out here.
I won’t watch the current series until it goes to DVD. I find it difficult enough to wait one night for the next episode… never mind waiting for one week to pass.
Apple does it again. A flurry of announcements with some really cool digital devices. The Mac Mini is relatively inexpensive at $629. It is a 2-inch tall, 6.5-inch square anodized aluminum enclosure. Mac mini houses a 1.25 or 1.42GHz G4 processor, 40 or 80GB hard drive, a CD-R/DVD-ROM optical drive, 256MB DDR SDRAM and ATI Radeon 9200 graphics chip with 32MB dedicated DDR SDRAM.
I continue to be quite impressed with Jordon Cooper. I highly recommend his blog. He seems to be involved in many different online activities as well as active in ministry. Thoughtful and informative and I always seem to discover something new and interesting from his posts.
Time to change cars and I made the decision last night to get a BMW 5 series sedan. The car should be ready this coming Friday or next Monday. Quite a machine. I’ve also started to grow a beard. And, my 48th birthday is just around the corner.
Can anyone say mid-life crisis?